From a trainee to a manager? INspire, our series of international talent programs, makes this possible. One example is "INspire - The Next Generation Retail". This is a trainee program by Mercedes-Benz corporate retail in Germany.
Applicants can choose between Sales, Customer Service, HR Management or Finance & Controlling. Nele Brocke, Enis Yaris and Daniel Vollkommer are currently working in our dealership in Berlin. They give an insight into the program in this interview and explain what they find inspiring about it.
Hello, could you please introduce yourself to our readers?
Brocke: Hi everyone, I am Nele, 25 years old and a HR Management Trainee in the Mercedes-Benz Own Retail at the Mercedes-Benz Group. I finished my master's degree in Corporate Management in the summer of 2018 and am now doing the 18-month Own Retail trainee program. In the subsequent assistant phase, I will prepare specifically for assuming a management role.
Vollkommer: My name is Daniel, I'm 30 years old and a business studies graduate. I have been working as Head of Spare Parts Business since successfully completing the trainee program in September 2017. Along with my team I am responsible for the parts business for our dealerships in Berlin.
Yaris: I am Enis, 30 years old, and just like Daniel, I also successfully completed the trainee program. I am currently working in Berlin as team leader for the Fleet and Diplomatic Sales unit. Before the program, I was, among others, a temporary student employee in the Product Management Mercedes-Benz Cars unit.
What made you choose INspire in the Mercedes-Benz Own Retail?
Brocke: During my studies, I had already worked as an intern in one of our Mercedes-Benz dealerships. I was won over by the diverse challenges posed by HR work, the cultural transformation at Mercedes-Benz and by a fascination for our products. For me, it quickly became clear that I wanted to stay after my studies.
Yaris: Even during my time as a working student, I realized that the Mercedes-Benz Group was a great employer. Participating in a trainee program that from the very beginning gave me the development chances for a career at management level and to do so with an international employer.
What is the talent program like?
Brocke: In the first year and a half we complete two to three trainee assignments at different dealerships. This gives us in-depth insight into operative daily business. We then do a further project assignment in the German sales headquarters in Berlin, where the focus is on strategic management of the Own Retail organization. The trainee phase is followed by the assistant phase, during which we assume initial management responsibilities. This can involve representing team leaders, for example. What I like best about the program is that we receive individual mentoring. The program is based on the previous experience and interests of each person. At the same time, we do training sessions that prepare us as best as possible for a management position afterwards.
What do you find fascinating about a dealership?
Yaris: Every job is different. Every work day is different. Every dealership is different. We inspire our customers anew every single day, and to experience this is a very satisfying feeling.
Vollkommer: The proximity to the customer and to our products is equally fascinating. Making decisions quickly, finding solutions quickly and sometimes failing quickly so as to then do better next time. This is what makes it fascinating for me.
What is your personal Mercedes moment?
Brocke: Definitely the moment I was accepted onto the trainee program. From then on it was clear that I wanted to continue working at Mercedes-Benz and to co-design the transformation in our leadership culture, HR work and Own Retail in the future.
If you had to describe "INspire" in three precise keywords, what would they be?
Brocke: Hidden picture book.Jukebox.Highway
Are you interested? If you would like to become a Management Trainee at a dealership, you can use our job search to find current job advertisements. More information about the "INspire – The Next Generation Retail" trainee program is available here.